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Washtenaw County Sheriff: Thieves Targeting Homes in Webster, Scio Townships

Sheriff's deputies are pursuing leads on home and business burglaries throughout western Washtenaw County since June.

A recent string of home invasions and larcenies in the Dexter area is prompting the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office to reach out to local residents.

Sgt. Keith Flores addressed the Dexter Village Council on Monday to update the council on summer crime trends in the community.

"The village has been more quiet (in terms of crime) this summer more so than some of its neighbors," Flores said.

There were a few in July and unknown suspects two weeks ago and stole more than $1,000 worth of alcohol, Flores said. The Dexter Pharmacy was robbed twice in recent months, once in May and again in July, according to police.

"In both instances, the suspects wore gloves and masks. We know for sure that there are two different crews targeting the area," he said.

Home invasions have been a big issue for residents of both Webster and Scio townships, according to Flores.

On Aug. 9 officers arrested a Dexter man on charges of home invasion, after he and two other male suspects were reportedly spotted leaving a Webster Township residence by the homeowner.

"We're starting to see burglaries occur when people are actually home," Flores said. "Ninety nine percent of home invasions occur when people are on vacation or otherwise away from their house."

Flores said the department is working closely with Scio Township to investigate other leads.

"These (crimes) are happening very close to Dexter, so we just want people to be aware of it," he said. "If you see something that's odd or out of place, call us and let us know. If it ends up being nothing, then that's great."

Village President Shawn Keough asked whether or not public restrooms would invite more crime in the community.

"Public restrooms aren't a bad thing. If people start to hang out or loiter, we can address that if it becomes a problem," Flores said. "We would definitely recommend locking the restrooms at a certain time just like you would a business."

The council may consider renovating the building formally owned by for public restrooms and a welcome center, however no plans have been formally introduced.

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